StellarMate

How to access Ekos Guide Logs? Open

Ekos Guide Logs are in PHD2-compatible format and are located in "~/.local/share/kstars/guideLogs".You can use PHD2LogViewer to view the analysis.

Ekos Guide Logs are in PHD2-compatible format and are located in "~/.local/share/kstars/guideLogs".
You can use PHD2LogViewer to view the analysis.

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Why can't my GPS dongle get a fix?

There are a few reasons for failing to get a 3D FIX from your GPS dongles. Indoor obstructions. Test with…

There are a few reasons for failing to get a 3D FIX from your GPS dongles.

  • Indoor obstructions. Test with GPS outside with clear access to the sky so that it can communicate with the satellites.
  • USB3 Interferance: If the GPS antenna is is connected close to an active USB3 port (a USB3 port connected to a device like a camera), then the interferance may lead to failure in obtaining a fix. It's recommended to get a GPS dongle with a long wire away from StelarMate to protect against unwanted interferance.
  • Incorrect baud rate: Some older GPS dongle uses a baud rate of 4800. The default baud rate in StellarMate is configured as 9600. Therefore, StellarMate would fail to communicate with the GPS dongle unless the rate is changed within StellarMate to match the GPS dongle rate.
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How to install StellarMate OS on a another MicroSD?

If you have purchased StellarMate from a retailer, please submit a new ticket and attach your order receipt and tell…

If you have purchased StellarMate from a retailer, please submit a new ticket and attach your order receipt and tell us if you don't see an order in the Orders page.

To be able to use a different MicroSD than the already built-in one, you need to flash StellarMate OS onto your MicroSD.

1. Login to the stellarmate.com website and then go to the Orders page.

2. You should see a list of  your orders. Click on your order link, then scroll down to see the downloads. Make sure to download the SM OS version appropiate for your hardware platform.

orders page

3. Download balenaEtcher, and install it, then open it.

balenaEtcher download

4. Connect an SD card reader to your computer with the MicroSD card inside.

5. Open Etcher and select from your hard drive the StellarMate OS  .xz file you just downloaded to write it to the MicroSD card.

balenaEtcher flash from file

balenaEtcher flash from file dialog

6. Select the MicroSD card you wish to write your image to.

balenaEtcher select target

balenaEtcher select target dialog

7. Review your selections and click 'Flash!' to begin writing data to the SD card.

balenaEtcher flash

8. When it's done, connect the MicroSD to StellarMate and power it up!

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Can I hook up an external USB drive for storing images and videos?

Absolutely. After you connect the external USB drive, use SM App to connect to StellarMate and start an equipment profile.…

Absolutely. After you connect the external USB drive, use SM App to connect to StellarMate and start an equipment profile.

Then go to Capture module and File Settings

smapp externalstorage

 

 Tap the external storage name and it would be set as the default location for the Pictures directory. Restart StellarMate for the change to take effect.

If the USB storage is not detected by StellarMate, it will fall back to the default /home/stellarmate/Pictures directory

1. Using KStars on StellarMate

if you are running KStars inside StellarMate directly, then simply browse the location in the Directory filed of the Capture Module. You can also paste the URL there directly.

kstars in stellarmate

2. Using KStars on Windows/MacOS/Linux

If you are running KStars remotely on a Windows/MacOS or Linux machine, then in this case you need to change the Upload mode to either Local (save images only in StellarMate) or Both (save images in StellarMate and send a copy to us). 

kstars on pc

You will see the Remote field getting enabled for editing. Simple paste the location URL here and start the capture process to have your images saved to the external USB disk.

 

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Cannot connect to DSLR camera?

The following is a list of checks you need to verify before contacting support regarding DSLR connectivity issues: Make sure…

The following is a list of checks you need to verify before contacting support regarding DSLR connectivity issues:

  • Make sure the camera battery is full.
  • Make sure there is enough space on your SD card.
  • Make sure the camera is set to Bulb/Manual mode. In some models you need to rotate the dial first to Manual then change the setttings to make it Bulb.
  • Turn off any power-saving features in the camera that might be making the camera go to sleep mode without your knowledge. Some cameras support inactivity timer, try to set it to 10 or 15 minutes to be on the safe side.
  • Try a different USB cable.
  • Try plugging the camera to a different USB port on StellarMate.

If none of the above works out, please submit a support ticket with details on your setup.

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Can I add a Real-Time Clock?

StellarMate Gadget already ships with RTC clock configured and ready to go. For users of StellarMate OS running on their…

StellarMate Gadget already ships with RTC clock configured and ready to go. For users of StellarMate OS running on their RPI3/RPI3B+, you can purchase a DS3231 module and install it. There is no need to perform any additional software configuration as StellarMate OS supports DS3231 natively.

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How to access images on StellarMate from PC/Mac?

If you captured images and saved them to StellarMate, then they should be available by default under /home/stellarmate/Pictures. To access…

If you captured images and saved them to StellarMate, then they should be available by default under /home/stellarmate/Pictures. To access the images over the network, there are two options:

  • On Windows, click on the Network icon in the left pane of File Explorer as illustrated below.

windows access stellarmate

If you do not see the StellarMate network share, please map the network drive as shown in this video:

  • On Linux & MacOS: Use FileZilla to connect to StellarMate via Secure FTP (sftp) using your username (stellarmate) and password (smate). Remember to set port to 5624.

stellarmate sftp settings

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How can I connect to StellarMate directly via Ethernet cable?

It is possible to connect to StellarMate directly without going via a router. Simply connect an ethernet cable from your…

It is possible to connect to StellarMate directly without going via a router. Simply connect an ethernet cable from your PC/Mac to StellarMate. There is no need to use a crossover cable, any regular Ethernet cable would do. You can access StellarMate as you would normally do via the address http://stellarmate.local

Using the App or StellarMate Dashboard, you can set StellarMate to Direct Ethernet mode. In this mode, StellarMate IP address is set to 192.168.100.1

Using your OS network configuration tool, Change your Network Adapter IP settings to the following:

  • IP Address: 192.168.100.2
  • Subnet Mask: 255.255.255.0
  • Gateway: 192.168.100.1
  • DNS: 192.168.100.1

windows static ip settings

After applying the settings, you can access StellarMate either via http://stellarmate.local or via http://192.168.100.1 address.

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Can I use my ASCOM drivers and software with StellarMate?

No. StellarMate is based on Open Astronomy Instrumentation Protocol (INDI) and does not use ASCOM. INDI enables native remote control…

No.

StellarMate is based on Open Astronomy Instrumentation Protocol (INDI) and does not use ASCOM. INDI enables native remote control of your equipment and numerous devices are supported by manufacturers today. Ekos is the officially supported client, but you can also use over 15+ clients on across many operating systems.

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How can I save my images on StellarMate?

StellarMate ships with 32GB MicroSD card. Images are saved by default to the internal SD card. It is possible to…

StellarMate ships with 32GB MicroSD card. Images are saved by default to the internal SD card. It is possible to change the default Pictures directory (/home/stellarmate/Pictures) to a different location using either StellarMate Tools or StellarMate App.

StellarMate Tools via VNC

stellarmatetools

Once the Pictures Directory is set, KStars and Network Storage is updated to the new directory. StellarMate requires a restart for this to take effect.

StellarMate App

From StellarMate App Capture Module, toggle File Settings to change the default Pictures directory or set it to an external storage.

smapp externalstorage

KStars on PC/Mac

If you are using Ekos on PC/Mac, then you need to set Upload mode to Local and then set the Remote Directory to /home/stellarmate/Pictures as illustrated below:

thumb windows stellarmate local

2. If you are using Ekos directly on StellarMate, simply set the Directory field in the capture module to /home/stellarmate/Pictures. The Upload mode should remain as Client.

/home/stellarmate/Pictures is case sensitive. Make sure not to set it by mistake to /home/stellarmate/pictures

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Can I use SSH to login remotely? How about SFTP?

Yes. Stellarmate does not use the default SSH port. Use port 5624 to login to StellarMate using your username and…

Yes. Stellarmate does not use the default SSH port. Use port 5624 to login to StellarMate using your username and password.

ssh -p 5624 This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

The same port should be used for SFTP (e.g. in FileZilla). You can perform remote update using the following command:

sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get -y dist-upgrade
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How do I update StellarMate?

Use Web-Based VNC Viewer or any VNC Viewer to access StellarMate. Simply double click the Software Updater icon to fetch…

Use Web-Based VNC Viewer or any VNC Viewer to access StellarMate. Simply double click the Software Updater icon to fetch updates. If there are any available updates, a window shall appear with the required upgrades. Click Install to download and install them. It is recommended to restart the unit after installation updates.

stellarmate update

If for any reason you are having problems with the GUI Software Updater, you can directly write a command to start update process. Double click the Mate Terminal icon and a terminal window shall be opened. Type in the following command and press enter:

sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get -y upgrade

stellarmate console

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How can I use a Joystick to control my mount?

Please follow instrucitons in Controlling your Mount with Joystick tutorial.

How can I use SkySafari to control my mount with StellarMate?

If you using StellarMate Web Manager, please add SkySafari driver to your Auxiliary drivers. From within Ekos, select SkySafari from…

If you using StellarMate Web Manager, please add SkySafari driver to your Auxiliary drivers. From within Ekos, select SkySafari from Auxiliary.

For complete instructions, please visit SkySafari INDI support page.

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How do I figure out StellarMate hostname?

By default, the unit hostname is stellarmate.local From StellarMate App, go to My Mates then select your unit. The hostname is the…

By default, the unit hostname is stellarmate.local

From StellarMate App, go to My Mates then select your unit. The hostname is the unit name. If you changed the unit name, then just use the name followed by .local

For example, if you changed the unit name to observatory, then your new hostname is observatory.local

Another way to find the hostname is to open the Web Manager from the StellarMate App and you will see the unit hostname in the browser address bar.

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What is the default password for StellarMate WiFi HotSpot? How to change?

StellarMate WiFi HotSpot password: stellar@mate To change default password, follow the steps in this vide:

StellarMate WiFi HotSpot password: stellar@mate

To change default password, follow the steps in this vide:

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Why is the WiFi Hotspot slow?

The StellarMate WiFi Hotspot by default operates at 2.4Ghz. As with any WiFi-enabled device, the signal strength and reliability can…

The StellarMate WiFi Hotspot by default operates at 2.4Ghz. As with any WiFi-enabled device, the signal strength and reliability can be affected by several factors:

1. Power Supply: StellarMate requires the use of a 3A+ 5V power supply (3 Amperes or higher) in order to properly operate StellarMate OS on Raspberry Pi 3/4. Using anything less than 3A would result in system instabilities and possible corruption. To solve this problem, invest in a reputable power supply before you boot StellarMate OS.

2. Congestion: if there are many WiFi Networks in the area surrounding StellarMate, the WiFi Hotspot might be slow due to signal and channel congestion. A possible solution in case of severe interference is to toggle WiFi frequency (2.4Ghz/5Ghz) in StellarMate OS and try to locate a channel that is relatively free of congestion.

3. Obstructions: If you used a metal case for StellarMate or the unit is attached to a metal surface, this can attenuate the signal. Try to keep StellarMate separate from any nearby metallic objects.

4. USB 3.0: There is a known issue with USB 3.0 ports causing significant interfaces with 2.4Ghz signals. If an active USB 3.0 port is used by any peripheral, it may lead to signal degradation. There are two methods to resolve this issue:
4.1 Connect USB 3.0 peripherals to the StellarMate USB 2.0 port
4.2 Switch StellarMate OS WiFi HotSpot Frequency to 5Ghz range which is immune to this interference from USB 3.0.
5. HDMI Resolution: If you connect StellarMate to an external display using an HDMI cable, then high resolution is known to cause interference with WiFi. Try to lower the HDMI resolution to improve the situation.

If none of the above solutions work, another possible solution to to try using a Wired Connection using Ethernet Cable. This can be achieved via a direct Ethernet connection between StellarMate and your PC/Mac, or via a router. It is a last-resort solution but is known to be reiable and almost 10 times faster than WiFi.

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I can't find StellarMate WiFi hotspot?

StellarMate HotSpot is only active when StellarMate is not connected to any WiFi network. By default, the StellarMate Hotspot operates…

StellarMate HotSpot is only active when StellarMate is not connected to any WiFi network. By default, the StellarMate Hotspot operates at 5Ghz WiFi (not 2.4Ghz). Therefore, your phone/tablet/PC must support 5Ghz WiFi. It is possible to switch StellarMate WiFi to 2.4Ghz but you need to use SM App to switch and you need a 5Ghz WiFi capable device first to connect to it.

Common Issues

1. Insufficient power: You must use a reliable power supply that can deliver 5 volts at 3.1 Amperes. If powered via battery, make sure it can consistently deliver 3A to StellarMate.

2. Noisy WiFi Environment: In case you have a very active and noisy WiFi environment (many WiFi network), it can overwhelm the WiFi controller in StellarMate and it cannot generate a proper hotspot. Try to get away from very noisy WiFi environments to have a successfully HotSpot.

3. Metal Enclosures: If using StellarMate OS with your own Raspberry PI with a metal case, then it can lead to attentuation of WiFi signals. Try to use a plastic enclosure.

4. Close Promixity to other electronic devices: Some users reported HotSpot signal loss when StellarMate is stacked with other devices like monitors or USB hubs. Try to maintain at least 15 cm away from any other electronic device that can cause interferance with the HotSpot Signal.

5. USB 3.0: There is a known issue with USB 3.0 ports causing significant interfaces with 2.4Ghz signals. If an active USB 3.0 port is used by any peripheral, it may lead to signal degradation. There are two methods to resolve this issue:
5.1 Connect USB 3.0 peripherals to the StellarMate USB 2.0 port
5.2 Switch StellarMate OS WiFi HotSpot Frequency to 5Ghz range which is immune to this interference from USB 3.0.

6. HDMI Resolution: If you connect StellarMate to an external display using an HDMI cable, then high resolution is known to cause interference with WiFi. Try to lower the HDMI resolution to improve the situation.

If you have trouble connecting StellarMate to your router via WiFi, please access your router and clear all cache and any entries for StellarMate.

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